punch cake

The other day, Australian Punch sent us a recipe Judy had asked him to pass on. It is a South African recipe with Dutch roots and sounded really good. Punch Drunk immediately held his hand up to try it and report back. After all, they are namesakes, though all the Dedes believe Punch Drunk got a few more whacks over his head by his Judy. This morning he counted how many eggs we had in the egg bowl, and yes, there were enough. He checked all the other ingredients as well and put them on the counter. Everything was there, except for vanilla essence. Then he copied the recipe from the message and showed it to Mouse for approval. “That sounds yummy indeed” Mouse said. “However, there might be a bit too much sugar in it and then I am not sure about the vanilla essence.”

“I found a passion fruit in the fridge. Could I use this for flavour?” asked Punch Drunk. Mouse recommended that when one cooks a recipe for the first time one should actually stick to the recipe to experience how the result should look and taste. The next time he could make changes. While they were discussing the passion fruit, Mouse noticed that in the recipe the eggs were separated and beaten separately. “Make sure” she reminded Punch Drunk “that no egg yolk gets into the egg whites and you need to beat the whites until they form stiff peaks. If the egg white is spoilt, with even the tiniest amount of yolk, it won’t happen. Also, clean your egg beater thoroughly should you beat anything that contains fat before you do the whites.” Punch Drunk listened carefully and nodded. He was rearing to get to work. Mouse left the kitchen to do other things.

So he followed the recipe and when he was half way through, he realised there was milk on the ingredient list, but it didn’t say at what point to add it. He called out to Mouse for help, but she was nowhere to be seen. “Ah well,” he shrugged his shoulders, “I’ll just do what I think” and added the milk and the passion fruit as well. It’s better to continue than throw out some perfectly good eggs and starting again.

When the cake came out of the oven it smelt delicious but was a bit runny. So he decided not to publish the recipe just yet and confer with Australian Punch first to see where he went wrong.